Associated British Foods (ABF) said its Allied Bakeries business had traded well in its full year results to 17 September 2011.
Its grocery division, which includes Allied, saw revenue up 7% to £3,638m from £3,406m. Adjusted operating profit increased 9% £249m to £229m.
The firm said Kingsmill, part of Allied Bakeries, saw success with its bakery snacks and rolls, with strong growth coming from its 50/50 range, which was extended into sandwich alternatives including wraps and pitta pockets.
Allied’s Burgen bread brand was expanded with a new product line, while increased in-store promotion helped to support the brand. ABF said Allinson, which relaunched in August, continued to lead the premium wholemeal sector.
An extensive upgrade to the West Bromwich bakery was completed in the financial year, with a new bulk handling system, warehouse extension and improved site access. “Roll production was consolidated there when the new plant came on stream, as planned, in March. Installation of a new bread plant and bulk handling system in Glasgow was completed during the summer and production is building following successful commissioning,” said the firm.
In its sugar division, AB Sugar delivered a record profit after world sugar prices hit 30-year highs during the year. In the UK, British Sugar’s profits reflected the impact of the crop shortfall resulting from the frost damage sustained during the severe weather last winter, said the firm. It added that the combination of an increase in production at British Sugar, a further improvement in its operations and higher sugar prices were expected to benefit the business.
Within its ingredients division, which comprises yeast supplier AB Mauri and ABF Ingredients, operating profit fell 46% to £104m, despite an increase in revenue of 5% to £1,123m. This was “as a consequence of significant raw material cost increases, a highly competitive trading environment in many of our markets and substantial commissioning costs of the new yeast factory in China.”
Group revenue was 9% to £11.1bn, with adjusted operating profit up 1% to £920m, and adjusted profit before tax up 1% to £835m.